Growing fears of a potential separation between Northern and Southern Sudan after the planned 2011 referendum are pushing the latter to consider building new trade routes.
Southern Sudan has announced plans to build a high speed railway line from Juba to Tororo in Uganda, even as the referendum continues to draw jitters among investors keen to invest in Africa’s biggest country.
Presidential adviser and director general of the project Kostelo Garang said phase one of the project from Tororo to Gulu will cost $3 billion (Sh225 billion) while the second one to Juba will cost an estimated $4 billion (Sh290 billion).
“There are however some investors who are waiting to see how the 2011 referendum goes before making their entry into South Sudan,” said Dr Garang.
This railway line is expected to facilitate the movement of goods and people to and from Juba to any part of the wider East African region including Mombasa, Uganda, Sudan, Ethiopia and Djibouti.
However, analysts, said Sudan can only construct a high speed rail if Kenya builds one since Kenya and Uganda are on course to building a standard gauge line although they are concentrating on the main Mombasa-Malaba-Kampala track first.